One month ago, Fernando Viciconte was inducted into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame. And this month, his label, Fluff & Gravy Records, will celebrate its five-year anniversary with a weekend of concerts at the Star Theater and Dante’s, as well as the label's studio.
In honor of the half decade of solid folk- and roots-leaning rock records from local artists, the label is set to release a 17-track compilation of new and unreleased songs from its artists, including Richmond Fontaine, Vacilando, Nick Jaina and Jeffrey Martin (who all share the Dante's stage on Saturday, November 12), as well as Hillstomp and Mike Coykendall (who play the Star Theater on Friday, November 11 with Cedar Teeth).
Five Years of Gravy features cuts "spanning the history of the label," says founder John Shepski. Also a benefit for The Jeremy Wilson Foundation, you can grab your copy at any of the anniversary shows (official release date November 16), or it comes free with the purchase of a three-day pass.
As for Fernando's contribution, the comp's opening track highlights a who's who of the Portland rock scene with fellow Oregon Music Hall of Famer Paul Brainard on pedal steel, Lewi Longmire on B-3 organ, Freddy Trujillo on bass, Matt Cadenelli on drums, Fernando Viciconte himself on acoustic guitar, and none other than R.E.M.'s Peter Buck capping off the song with a rare electric guitar solo at the end. An outtake from his most recent F&G release, Leave the Radio On, it has "a county/rock feel to it and didn’t really fit in with the rest of the record," Fernando explains. Add in mixing and recording duties by Mike Coykendall and it's really the perfect representation of the five years this gravy train has been chugging along.